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County to Build New Library to Serve Monrovia-Arcadia-Duarte Area


On a recommendation by Supervisor Michael Antonovich, the Board of Supervisors approved the purchase of a new library site to improve public library services for county residents of the Monrovia-Arcadia-Duarte area. The new library will be on a 22,000 square foot parcel at 22 West Live Oak Blvd., and will cost $2.17 million. A public hearing to receive comment and complete the proposed acquisition is set for September 27. Source: press release

- Brad Haugaard

West Nile Virus Found In Monrovia; Legal Response to MALDEF; 4th Dimension; Etc.


In his weekly report ( http://goo.gl/GoKhjt ), City Manager Oliver Chi reports that ...

~ West Nile Virus has come to Monrovia. The San Gabriel Valley Mosquito and Vector Control District reports ( http://goo.gl/DwpI8W ) that a dead bird that tested positive for West Nile Virus was found in Monrovia. City Manager Oliver Chi adds that "since West Nile Virus was first found in California in 2003, more than 5,588 people have been infected with the West Nile Virus disease, and 229 deaths have occurred."

~ The city is working with the City Attorney to prepare its response to the legal threat by the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF), demanding that the city switch to district-based elections, rather than elections at large.

~ A developer is considering buying the old 4th Dimension building on Myrtle Avenue in Old Town for a 5,000 square foot restaurant and 22,000 square feet for office space. Chi said the potential buyer "will be finalizing the decision regarding whether or not to purchase the 4th Dimension building within the next few weeks."

~ Monrovia has contracted with Precision Concrete Cutting (PCC) to make sidewalk repairs throughout the city. The company has gotten started and uses a "patented diamond-cutting technology to salvage existing sidewalk panels when possible." Chi said this lowers the cost of sidewalk. It appears the company shaves the edges of sidewalk blocks so blocks that are offset come together without a ledge.

~ Monrovia plans to replace worn banners honoring members of the military with new banners. If you or a member of your family living in Monrovia is serving in the armed forces, let the city know so that person can be recognized. Details: http://goo.gl/vUd2Tx

~ Friends of the Monrovia Public Library will hold its annual Fall Book Sale on September 9 & 10, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Monrovia Public Library. 50 cents for mass market paperbacks, $2 for trade paperback and hardback books, 25 cents for children's books, $2 for CDs and movies, and a few larger books priced at $5. Then, on Sept. 9 from 4-5 p.m. shoppers can buy a grocery bag of books for $5.

- Brad Haugaard

Celebrate the Arts Show at Library Park Oct. 29-30


Monrovia Association of Fine Arts will present its 53rd Annual Celebrate the Arts Show and ChalkFest on Saturday (10 a.m.- 6 p.m. and Sunday (10 a.m.- 4 p.m., Oct. 29/30 at Monrovia Library Park. Highlights at this admission-free event will include artist demonstrations and art sales, kids chalk activities from ChapCare, a beer garden by Pacific Plate Microbrewery, a Collectible Book Sale by the Friends of Monrovia Library, continuous live entertainment, and robotics and urban art displays by Monrovia High School students. Admission is free and a variety of food trucks will be on hand. For more information or to sign up for an artist booth space, contact christine@monroviafinearts.org.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: Forgery; Suspicious Door Handle Checking; Drinking and Drugs; Shoplifting; Burglary


[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for August 18-21. - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Forgery – Suspect Arrested
August 18 at 11:57 a.m., officers were dispatched to a business in the 900 block of E. Huntington. A subject had turned in a fraudulent prescription at the pharmacy to obtain anti-depressants and narcotics. The officers arrived and detained the suspect. The officers determined the prescription was fraudulent and the suspect was arrested without incident.

Vehicle Tampering / Conspiracy – Suspects Arrested
August 19 at 4:59 a.m., officers responded to the 1100 block of Norumbega on the report of a suspicious subject looking into vehicles and checking door handles. When the suspect was spotted by the caller, he ran to a waiting vehicle being driven by a second suspect, and the suspects fled. A description of the suspect and vehicle was broadcast and officers located and stopped the suspect vehicle. The suspect was positively identified. The passenger was arrested for vehicle tampering and the driver for conspiracy. The investigation is continuing for any possible victims of a theft.

Possession of Methamphetamine – Suspect Arrested
August 19 at 2:59 p.m., a suspicious female was reported in the 100 block of N. Sunset. She was seen leaving an unoccupied residence. Officers arrived and detained the female, who was found to be in possession of methamphetamine and possible stolen property. The female was arrested and taken into custody.

Domestic Violence – Suspect Arrested
August 19 at 8:25 p.m., officers responded to the area of Olive & Myrtle regarding a male and female fighting. The female was determined to be under the influence. She was involved in an argument with her boyfriend. During the argument, she had slapped and scratched him. She was arrested for domestic violence.

Disturbing the Peace / Drunk in Public – Suspect Arrested
August 20 at 11:17 p.m., a disturbing subject was reported in the 500 block of E. Walnut. The subject was intoxicated and was yelling and causing a disturbance. The caller placed him under private person’s arrest. The officers arrested the subject for disturbing the peace and for being drunk in public.

Grand Theft Auto
August 21 at 7 a.m., a vehicle was reported stolen from the 200 block of W. Lemon. The victim reported her 1991 Honda Civic was stolen from in front of her residence. The investigation is continuing.

Possession of Methamphetamine
August 21 at 9:57 a.m., officers responded to the report of a subject loitering in a tent at a park in the 400 block of N. Grand. When officers arrived, they located two subjects inside and near the tent. One of the subjects was found to be in possession of methamphetamine. The subject was cited for the violation.

Non-Injury Traffic Collision
August 21 at 11:35 a.m., a traffic collision was reported in the area of Foothill and Primrose. When officers arrived, they located one of the parties and determined he had been drinking and had possibly taken prescription medications. The subject was having difficulty staying conscious and displayed signs of being under the influence. He was taken to a hospital for his condition and his vehicle was stored.

Shoplifting
August 21 at 1:56 p.m., a business in the 1600 block of S. Mountain called police to report a shoplifting incident. Two adult females entered the store, selected merchandise, and then went to the return counter to return the merchandise without paying for it. The subjects were arrested and issued a citation to appear in court on the theft charges.

Residential Burglary
August 21 at 2:51 p.m., a residential burglary was reported in the 300 block of N. Canyon. The victim left her residence at 12:30 p.m. When she returned at 2:50 p.m., she found her home had been broken into and ransacked. A glass sliding door at the rear of the house had been shattered. Several items were stolen, which included a laptop, watches, cash, and jewelry. The investigation is continuing.

SET for LIFE Health Fair at Monrovia's Second Baptist Church


SET for LIFE will hold its 12th annual Healthy Families for LIFE Fair and Expo on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Second Baptist Church, at 925 S Shamrock Ave., in Monrovia. The event provides medical screenings, interactive educational workshops, physical fitness activities, mammograms, cancer prevention resources and support to reduce the incidence and mortality rate of cancer within African-American, Latino, and Asian families. The event will also feature free food, giveaways, and special activities for youth and teens. Sponsorships available. For more information contact Patricia Duff Tucker at patricia@setforlifenews.org

- Brad Haugaard

Library Park Concert


The Smokin' Cobras in concert at Library Park tonight.
 
- Brad Haugaard

Interview With Monrovia Olympian Kim Rhode


A video interview with Monrovian Kim Rhode, who has now won an Olympic medal in sixth consecutive Olympics. http://goo.gl/ibfQoh

- Brad Haugaard

Forest Service Completes Draft Plan for San Gabriel Mountains National Monument


The US Forest Service has completed a draft plan for managing the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument, up in the mountains behind Monrovia, which proposes using shuttle buses to help people access the area.

The report ( http://goo.gl/yzsc1M ) gives me the impression that the Forest Service would like to reduce the number of cars in the mountains, since it proposes adding, "alternative means of transportation, including shuttle bus service connecting surrounding communities and public transportation hubs." Also, it adds that, "Positive changes to the system could involve the removal of unnecessary roads..." From page 132 of the plan.

Comment: I dunno. This proposal could be completely reasonable and simply a matter of good traffic control, but I have had a growing sense over the past eight or ten years that the Forest Service wants to severely reduce the number of places within wilderness areas where people are allowed to go and just put them on a few footpaths that go in a short loop from a few parking lots. I hope I'm wrong.

Additional information here: http://goo.gl/KmvRcH

- Brad Haugaard

Dinner at Zen Buffet



Dinner last night at Zen Buffet, at Fifth and Huntington. A wide selection of food, Asian and western for $15.95 Plus $3 for a beer. You can go back again and again and the food is pretty good, so come hungry. 

- Brad Haugaard 

Monrovia Police: Car Goes Through Train Crossing Gates; Defrauding an Innkeeper; Car vs. Bike; BB Gun; Etc.


[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for August 15-17. - Brad Haugaard]

During the last seven-day period, the Police Department handled 392 service events, resulting in 81 investigations.

Disturbing Subjects / Driving Under the Influence / Drunk in Public – Suspects Arrested
August 15 at 9:55 p.m., officers were dispatched to a business in the 200 block of E. Foothill regarding two subjects in a dispute with employees. The disturbing subjects left in a silver vehicle, heading north on May, prior to police arrival. An officer searched the area and located the vehicle at May and Greystone. Both driver and passenger were determined to be under the influence of alcohol. The driver was arrested for driving under the influence and the passenger for being drunk in public.

Grand Theft
August 16 at 1:48 p.m., a grand theft was reported at a business in the 100 block of W. Foothill. The male suspect entered the business, placed over 40 containers of baby formula in a cart and left the store without paying. The suspect was not located and the investigation is continuing.

Defrauding an Innkeeper – Suspect Arrested
August 16 at 6:52 p.m., officers responded to a restaurant regarding an intoxicated subject refusing to pay. The suspect entered the restaurant and ordered food and alcohol from the bar area. Employees confronted the suspect when he attempted to leave without paying the bill. The suspect had no means or intentions of paying for the services. The suspect was arrested for defrauding an innkeeper and being drunk in public.

Injury Traffic Collision
August 16 at 8:46 p.m., a traffic collision was reported at Myrtle and Foothill. A vehicle hit a bicyclist in the intersection. An officer responded to investigate the collision. The bicyclist was riding on the sidewalk and entered traffic in front of the vehicle. The bicyclist sustained small scratches on his leg.

Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspects Arrested
August 17 at 3:50 a.m., possible drug activity or sales taking place in a business parking lot in the 200 block of W. Huntington was reported to police. Officers responded to the location and contacted a female and male subject in the lot. A consent search of the subjects revealed both had methamphetamine pipes on their person. Both were arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia.

Injury Traffic Collision
August 17 at 9:20 a.m., officers responded to the report of a vehicle collision at Myrtle and Duarte. The vehicle that was involved in the collision was now stopped near the Metro Rail tracks. Officers arrived and the vehicle was moved away from the tracks. The elderly female driver said she became dizzy and light headed as she went through the intersection. She veered into the number one lane and struck the crossing arm for northbound traffic, then proceeded to cross the railroad center median and struck the crossing arm for southbound traffic. Her vehicle came to a rest in southbound lanes of traffic, near the railroad tracks. There were no other vehicles involved. Metro personnel were notified.

Man with a Gun / 72 Hour Mental Evaluation
August 17 at 7:26 p.m., police received two calls reporting a man with a gun in his waistband, walking through a bank parking lot in the 200 block of S. Myrtle. The suspect was seen walking through the parking lot towards the rear of a preschool. Police responded to the area. An officer located the suspect sitting in a chair outside a restaurant on Foothill. He could see the suspect still had the gun in his waistband. The officer detained the suspect at gunpoint until assisting officers arrived. The suspect was detained and the investigation revealed the weapon was a BB gun. The suspect was not making sense and appeared to be mentally ill. He was taken to a hospital, where he was held for a 72-hour mental evaluation.

Possession of a Controlled Substance / Possession of Drug Paraphernalia – Suspects Arrested
August 18 at 12:50 a.m., officers on patrol stopped a vehicle for a traffic violation at Myrtle and Colorado. The vehicle was occupied by two female and two male subjects. One of the male subjects claimed he was seventeen and was taken into custody for curfew violation. The other male adult was found to be on probation for drug and weapon violations. A search of the vehicle revealed methamphetamine, pills and drug paraphernalia. All three adults were arrested for the drug charges. Further investigation revealed the subject that claimed he was a juvenile was an adult who was wanted for smuggling narcotics into the jail system.

The New Bronze Statuary on Myrtle


Gem City Images has some nice pictures of the new bronze movie statues installed today on Myrtle. http://goo.gl/q2Lo1h

- Brad Haugaard

Special Permission to Demolish Old Buildings? Sculpture Installation Today, Retired FD Captain Dies; Gas Bill; Sewer Work; Tree Lights; Tutors


In his latest weekly report ( http://goo.gl/w5Oo9g ), City Manager Oliver Chi reports ...

~ The Planning Commission has recommended regulations that would require getting city permission to tear down a building more than 49 years old, to ensure it has no historical value. Here is the full staff report: http://goo.gl/e0GT26

~ The bronze sculpture by Daniel Stern will be installed on Myrtle Avenue today, August 17, on the east side of Myrtle near the Krikorian Theatre. It features an old fashioned movie director, a free standing movie camera, and a tall director's chair you can sit in.

~ Retired Fire Captain John Rooks died unexpectedly last week while at home. He retired in November 2015 after serving the Monrovia community with distinction for 29 years.

~ If you get a high bill for natural gas, it may be because SoCalGas had a problem with some of its advanced gas meters and under-billed customers. It guesstimates about 11,000 customers (probably not many in Monrovia) have been affected.

~ Sewer work on Monterey Avenue just south of Huntington Drive (across from the Toys 'R' Us and Panda Express parking lot) will begin on Monday, August 22. Should last 5-7 business days. Working hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

~ The city has changed the lights on the trees in Old Town to be "more consistent in their height and installation layout," which "should create a more uniform and elegant display throughout Old Town." Now the lights go up and down the trees rather than round and round.

~ Real-live, free tutors for homework help at the Monrovia Library website, daily from 1 to 10 p.m., all ages welcome. Help with math, English, science, social studies, and test prep. Plus a writing lab, where students can submit essays for feedback from teachers around the country. Also, lesson plans, and a flashcard builder. You need a library card. Start here ( https://goo.gl/xnpB5f ), enter your library card number and PIN (your full 10-digit phone number) and click on Brainfuse HelpNow link. Questions? Ask librarian or call 256-8274.

- Brad Haugaard

Remembering 9/11 - Patriotic Concert at First Presbyterian



Patriot Day Concert at First Presbyterian Church of Monrovia (corner of Myrtle and Foothill). Remembering 9/11 on Sept. 11 at 4 p.m. with somber and celebratory music celebrating America by the San Gabriel Valley Musical Artists. Music: Jubilee Overture, American Salute, 9/11 We Stand for Freedom, Lincoln Speaks of Liberty, New World Symphony, Stars and Stripes Forever. Suggested donation $7 per person. Instrumentalists wanted. Details: http://goo.gl/A1rPhU or call 358-5939.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia's Movie Making Companies


A bit of interesting history about Monrovia-based movie companies. Did you know that the Monrovia Feature Film Company filmed "The Argonauts of California - 1849" in Gold Hills in 1916? http://goo.gl/YD3xEq

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia Police: DUI With Children; Sleeping at the Wheel


[Monrovia Police activities from the Police Department's Neighborhood Watch Report for August 11-14. - Brad Haugaard]

Following are the weekend’s highlighted issues and events.

Driving Under the Influence / Child Endangerment – Suspect Arrested
August 11 at 10:44 a.m., staff at a middle school in the 300 block of E. Foothill called police to report an intoxicated parent that was leaving the school in a vehicle. Officers responded and located the vehicle at Ivy and Foothill. A traffic stop was conducted and, through investigation, the officers determined the driver was too intoxicated to operate a motor vehicle safely. The vehicle was occupied by the driver and her 12-year-old son. The female driver was arrested for driving under the influence and child endangerment. The child was released to family members and the Department of Children and Family Services was notified.

Driving Under the Influence – Suspect Arrested
August 14 at 11:05 p.m., an officer was dispatched on the report of a vehicle stopped in the roadway with a male subject slumped over and asleep behind the wheel. The investigation determined the driver was too intoxicated to operate a motor vehicle; he was arrested for driving under the influence and taken into custody. He was held for a sobering period.

Crime Up 29% in Monrovia Because of Changes in Law, Chief Reports


Monrovia Police Chief Jim Hunt reports that crime in Monrovia is up 29 percent, according to Monrovia Mayor Tom Adams.

Adams said Assembly Bill 109 and Proposition 47 "have all put more criminals on the streets. The state didn't plan well enough to have a jobs program waiting for them." Also, he said, "The Governor just vetoed a bill approved by all members of the state legislature except one. That bill would have made gun theft a felony, now, if the gun is worth less than $950 you get a citation."

- Brad Haugaard

New Condo Project Opening On Duarte Road



Lotus Court, a new condominium project at 430-438 Duarte Rd. will hold its grand opening on Aug. 27, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The building has 13 units, a private community grounds, and echoes Spanish architecture throughout. Units are 1,558-1,722 square feet, 3 bedrooms and 3-3.5 bathrooms and start at about $560,000.

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovian Wins Olympic Medal for Six Olympics in a Row


Monrovian Kim Rhode has won the bronze medal in skeet shooting at the Rio Olympics. It's her sixth Olympic medal in six consecutive Olympic games, a record for a female athlete. http://goo.gl/xNnyXj

- Brad Haugaard

Monrovia City Council Meets With Legal Counsel Over Legal Threat


the Monrovia City Council will hold a special closed meeting on Aug. 16 to confer with its attorney about a legal threat from MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund) if the city does not switch over from city-wide elections to district elections. http://goo.gl/L0EZMy

Comment: As one of the people who commented on this story wrote on MonroviaNow, it would be interesting to know if there has been "any pattern of Latino candidates running, but not obtaining office." Indeed. It seems to me that if Latino candidates run and don't win that is one question, but if they don't run and don't win, that is another question entirely.

- Brad Haugaard

Dinner at Red Lobster



Dinner last night at Red Lobster on Huntington. Got a small order of Atlantic Salmon for $16.99 (market price, I think) and an iced tea for $2.85. It came with a nice salad, which I ate before taking this picture. I was trying to be good so I got broccoli and zucchini as sides when I really wanted potatoes, But surprise! They were great, as was the fish. 

- Brad Haugaard